Car wash worker rescues man's $1,200 IRS stimulus check from trash

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May 22 (UPI) -- An employee at a North Carolina car wash found a $1,200 IRS stimulus check in the trash at work and was able to track down its rightful recipient with the help of his daughter.

Antonio Hernandez found the COVID-19 stimulus check bearing the name Charles Thompson in the trash while working at Evans Street Car Wash in Greenville.


Hernandez enlisted the help of his daughter, Michelle Alvarado, to find the check's rightful owner. The address listed on the mailed check turned out to be Thompson's former residence, but Alvarado was able to find contact information for the Army veteran.

"I never thought I was going to get a check, because of moving in the past year and my address not changing, and out of the blue Michelle told me she found it at this car wash," Thompson told WITN-TV.

He said the check finding its way back to him was a miracle.

"From my old apartment, to the trash can, to a great person like Michelle Alvarado and her father finding it," he said, "and Michelle doing the leg work to find me, I mean, what else do you call that?"


Thompson said the check will allow him to catch up on rent and get by while construction work remains inconsistent.

Alvarado said she and her father were happy to help.

"It was very important for him to receive that check. Especially in these uncertain times, of course we would have given it to him," Alvarado said, "and we're very happy that he has the check now."

A 6-year-old boy helped return a different sort of lost property earlier in the same week. Knox Brewer was magnet fishing in South Carolina's Whitney Lake when he reeled in something heavy -- a metal safe.

The safe was found to have been stolen from a neighbor's home eight years earlier. The woman was reunited with objects including jewelry, a notebook and a checkbook.

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